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Physiologist Appointed to Gottwald Chair

FullTextImage/img/@altDr. Andrew J. Young ’74

LEXINGTON, Va., July 21, 2014 – A VMI alumnus with an extensive background in physiology and military nutrition has been named as the Floyd D. Gottwald Jr. ’43 Visiting Professor in Leadership and Ethics for the 2014-15 academic year.

Dr. Andrew J. Young ’74 recently retired as chief of the military nutrition division at the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine in Natick, Mass. Young has written more than 130 articles reporting his research concerning the biological basis for, and strategies to mitigate, performance degradations in people exposed to stressors such as intense physical exertion, sleep restriction, nutritional deprivation, and exposure to extremes of heat, cold, and high altitude.

Young is a fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine, editor-in-chief of the American College of Sports Medicine’s flagship scientific journal, Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, and a member of the American Physiological Society.

Upon obtaining a bachelor’s degree in biology from VMI, Young commissioned in the U.S. Army. He served first at the U.S. Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine and then at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. After his retirement from the Army, Young continued as a civilian employee at the Research Institute. In 1977, Young earned a doctorate in physiology at North Carolina State University.

At VMI this year, Young will be embedded in both the biology and physical education departments under the aegis of their exercise science program. During the fall semester, he will teach a course in operational and environmental physiology. In the spring semester, he will teach a course titled Developing Human Nutritional Strategies.

In addition, Young will be a guest speaker in biology and physical education courses, lead an Institute honors forum each semester, and deliver a class lecture, “Ethics and Leadership in the STEM Fields.”

Among those welcoming Young to VMI will be Col. Dave Miller, interim director of the Center for Leadership and Ethics, sponsor of the professorship. “I’m very much looking forward to Dr. Young’s presentation to one VMI class in the CLE this coming spring,” said Miller. “It will be a great opportunity for cadets to hear from a world-renowned expert and VMI alumnus with decades of experience working to solve complex problems to provide the best support possible to America’s sons and daughters on the front lines.”

The Gottwald professorship was established in 2008 as one of the Center’s major initiatives. Each year, the Gottwald Professorship, which is intended to provide a variety of disciplinary perspectives on leadership and ethics, is embedded in one or more of VMI’s 15 academic departments.

Previous holders of the Gottwald chair have included Dr. Paul Hebert ’68, an internationally known humanitarian aid worker; Dr. William Lad Sessions, a retired professor of philosophy from Washington and Lee University; Lt. Gen. John W. Knapp ’54, superintendent emeritus of VMI; and Dr. Lewis “Bob” Sorley, a military historian.